Forget Robert Louis Stephenson who has very little to do with Mark Harold’s well-intentioned adaptation of his classic story, played at Ferneham Hall.
And a curious beast the adaptation is. Like its eponymous hero, it is a creature with a split personality. The language changes from scene-to-scene: occasionally a high-Victorian prose; more often a more modern take on the language. Sometimes Harold goes for the high drama of the original then descends to the low, punning, bawdy humour of the Carry Ons.
At one point the cast even break into rhyming couplets.
There’s more than the germ of a gem in there, and with revision the piece could be a winner.
Ed Owen-Jones is sincere as Jekyll, but Paul Denney as Hyde has the edge on him, giving a magnificently monstrous creation, but funny, too.
Alexandra McLean fares better as the music hall dancer than she does as Millicent Carew, with some lovely comic delivery. Zak Fletcher is also one to watch out for in the future. Until Saturday.